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Utah Heli Schools


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I am looking on opinions and/or advice on choosing a helicopter school. What are the good ones who to be aware of.

 

Below is my findings and understanding thus far of the heli schools.

 

Some schools have Robinson to learn in and some have the Schweizer 300C. I have heard both sides of the arguments by differnent schools saying that one is better than others. From the opinions of most I understand that the Robinson is used more and something I would be more apt to running into later in my career. Also I grew up on a ranch in a small town and always appreciated the hard work I had to do which made me a better person today so I would hope that same principal with helicopters would be the same. If the robinson takes a little bit more to fly that will develop my flying skills to make me better off in the future when I am flying the stronger helicopter.

 

Also most of the schools in Utah except one is a part 61 school. The only school I could see that was part 141 was the Upper Limit. My understanding is the 141 is more of a scheduled school time, group teaching less one on one, more formal. I think with my learning I would benefit from more of the part 61 of one on one. Only downfall I see from the 61 is it could be just any joe shmoe that started his school and the classes would be less organized.

 

Also the location and terrain around seems to be important. Cost of living, terrain to train around, traffic in sky, elevation all were factors for me.

 

 

I have looked at and interviewed the following schools:

Utah Helicopters (West Jordan, UT)

Wasatch Helicopter Academy (Layton, UT)

Upper Limit (SLC, UT)

Whirly Bird (Ogden, UT)

High Desert (Ogden, UT)

Mountain Air (Logan, UT)

 

I have also read Hillsboro, OR website.

 

Each one, of course, says they're the best. I have seen so many different variations that have promised to take me to my end goal of becoming a professional helicopter pilot.

 

My findings so far listed in what I have felt pros and cons

 

Utah Helicopters-

Pros-

One on one teaching

Flexible schedules

Fleet of R22 and R44

Also part of two other locations in Rocky mountains

Great opening social getting the public out to experience and learn about heli school. They even gave away free helicopter training flights

 

Cons- Cost of living more expensive

 

 

Wasatch Helicopter-

Too cocky didn't fill that I would mesh well with their pilots or instructors

 

Upper Limit

Pros-

Learn Bravo Airspace really well

Had R22, R44 and a nice Bell chopper that I think that instructors could fly in to get more hours

 

Cons-

In Bravo airspace so it would take a while each and every flight before I could start flying.

more expensive cost of living

big city living

 

Whirly Bird

Too new and and not established yet

 

Desert Helicopters

Pros

Great customer service

very friendly

new hangar, offices and training rooms they share with a fixed wing school

very professional

great information in the first meeting

cheap cost of livinig around airport.

Gave me lots of materials to help me with finding financial aid

Seemed well established and organized

 

Cons

have schweizer 300c which not many other schools have if i had to switch schools

training is done in group setting rather than one on one

have to wait till they have enrolment to start school( like every 15 or 10 days or something)

school takes money into escrow account, I need to research more on this cause I was a little weary and didn't compltly understand that sort of account and how easy they had access to my account.

 

Mountain Air Helicopters

Pros

Great equipment

building a new hangar, poured the footings this week and have all metal outside should be up soon. I saw it today! looks awesome!

One on one class room learning

will give extra help with classroom syllabus. will give page numbers and other help on finding information about section you are learning

Cost of living is cheap, but opportunities for fulltime or part-time job in Logan are horrible.

2 R22 and 1 R44 and also the owner has an MD500 that they say on their website we get 1 hour of flight in and he also said sometimes the owner will come up as a reward and let you train in it.

 

Cons

only been in business 2 years( could be good or bad)

Chief Pilot is really busy and he said about himself that other schools would say that is what is bad about him is that he is too busy and its hard to schedule time.

 

There is definately more about these schools but this is what sticks out in my mind right now. Please visit each of these schools websites for more info if you are interested in learning more about these schools as am I.

 

My choice right now is between High Desert Heli and Mountain Air. both are Part 61 but have great training facilities, and friendly and the type of personalities that I think I would fit well with.

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